One question that everyone surfing the internet is concerned with is am I visible to the network provider? Is it visible to him what I am searching or which sites I am visiting in the browser? Therefore, in this post we will be answering the query Can Wifi owner see what sites I visit on Phone?
Introduction — Can Wifi owner see what sites I visit on Phone
First things first. Yes, in all probability, a wifi owner is able to see the sites you visit. However, it all depends on several things to determine if the wifi owner can see what sites you visit.
- Type of router the user is connected to
- Implementation of a TLS/SSL certificate on the web site you visited
- Presence of a lively VPN connection
Let’s also not forget that your Wifi provider can attempt to be using packet sniffing tools like, for instance, WireShark. Therefore, I recommend using a VPN every time you surf the Internet.
Can Wifi Routers track your browsing history
Yes, they do, though it’s not common. Old Wifi routers aren’t meant to be used for Internet traffic tracking on their own, meaning one would need to have some pretty extensive technical knowledge and a group of right tools to see your Wifi history through a router. But, similarly, new routers have an in-built tracking mechanism that enables them to track your browsing history. Hence, privacy becomes a very questionable topic.
Now, let’s see basically what all things can be tracked in the process.
Unfortunately, things monitored on WiFi aren’t just the browsing history, but this sphere encompasses a lot of other things. Suppose to say :
- The exact time once you connected to the web
- Time that you simply spent online and even on particular sites
- Specific URLs that you visit.
- Unencrypted HTTP websites data
- Source & destination IP address
Concept of HTTP and HTTPS
When we visit any site we need to enter its URL into the address bar, which generally starts with either https:// or even with http://. So, what are these. Basically these are transfer protocols governing the sites we visit. HTTP is an abbreviated form of the HyperText Transfer Protocol while HTTPS is its comparatively secure version (S=Secure). HTTPS is secure because it implements a TLS/SSL certificate which is a global standard for security technology. TLS/SSL provides secure(encrypted) information exchange between the client and the server.
Thus, the content of an HTTPS website is not seen by the wifi owner, even though the URLs we visit are seen by him.
Can Wifi owner see what sites I visited Incognito
What is Incognito mode? It is an in-built feature of the many browsers that we use today helping us surf the web privately. Once enabled, this mode helps the browser delete all stored data on your computer after each session. These deleted data include our search history, cookies, and other private information we generally store or use while filling forms, emails, etc.
But still are you safe enough?
Unfortunately, the answer to this question is a big NO !!
WiFi owners, or ISPs (the Internet Service Providers) can easily track the websites we visit using their servers. It is because the Incognito Mode doesn’t control internet traffic.
It means your Phone browsing history is not safe too?
Yes, indeed !! If you generally surf the internet on your smartphone your Wifi owner or ISP can track your browsing history. Not only that, they are also able to see :
- The apps we have been using
- The source & destination IP address
- The unencrypted HTTP websites data
And, not to mention if the Wifi provider is hell bent on tracking you, then by employing several resources like a logging infrastructure, can track other details like :
- Call & text logs
- Text & audio messages
- MMS data
They can even, by intercepting your network traffic, track and steal card details, account credentials, saved passwords and other private and personal information. Thus, wifi is an open technology and hence, flawed instead of being flawless. Hence, to be on the safer side it is always advisable to use VPNs (Virtual Private Networks) to browse.
Hiding Browsing History on Wifi
To hide your browsing history on wifi, we may use Tor Browser or the best one is use any VPN service provider.
You can use the Tor browser to cover your search history from the WiFi owner. Tor browser encrypts all the traffic that passes through the Tor network. Hence, the websites we visit are generally safe from the eyes of the wifi owner.
Virtual Private Network
A VPN or the Virtual Private Network, helps us anonymously browse the web, even though we may connect to someone else’s Wifi. It is because a VPN assigns you a totally different IP address, hides your identity, and also carefully encrypts your Internet traffic.
Tor Vs VPN
- VPN is comparatively faster than Tor.
- VPN offers much more advanced and solid security cover than Tor, as it uses AES-256 encryption.
- You can choose a server in VPN while, its not the case while using Tor.
SUMMARY — Can Wifi owner see what sites I visit on Phone
Hoping to have cleared your doubts and highlited the subject thereby, supplying you with the required knowledge. To sum it up all :
- Your browsing is not safe from the privy eyes of your wifi owner.
- Except for search history, there are other sensitive data too, which are monitorable.
- Tor browser and VPN help us hide sensitive information from the wifi owner.
- VPN may be a more sensible choice than Tor if you would like to be confident in your online privacy and security.
- We should also try not to use public networks or Wifi.